Antique Shanghai Pop Music

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Zhou Xuan Special II, 1941 - 1945

In this installment, we continue to explore Zhou's life and her songs. We witness the shift in her techniques and the musical genre's aesthetics - folk tune themed pop music gave way to Jazz music. During this period, Zhou's artistic mastery also reached its mature stage.
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1
Lady Plum’s Dance1941
梅妃舞
2
The Plum Blossom Song1941
梅花曲
3
The Flower-Planting Song1941
種花歌
4
The Boating Song1941
划船歌
5
Spring at the Bell Mountain1941
鍾山春
6
The Longing of Four Seasons I1941
四季相思 之一
7
The Longing of Four Seasons II1941
四季相思 之二
8
A Talking Flower1941
解語花
9
The Wind of May1941
五月的風
10
Deep in the Night1942
夜深沉
11
Too Many Regrets1942
恨事多
12
When Shall We Meet1942
幾時相逢
13
Gazing at Stars1942
望星兒
14
Sentiments Through Plum Blossoms1942
梅花寄意
15
Roses1942
玫瑰
16
Blooming Lotuses1942
蓮花開
17
Dancing Butterflies1942
蝴蝶飛
18
Journey to See off My love1942
送哥行
19
A Fisherman’s Daughter1943
漁家女
20
The Exchange1943
交換
21
A Mad World1943
瘋狂世界
22
The Tastes of Longing1944
相思的滋味
23
The Waiting Song1944
候郎曲
24
Burying Flowers1944
葬花
25
A Dreadful Morning1944
討厭的早晨
26
A Lovely Morning1944
可愛的早晨
27
Unchangeable Heart1944
不變的心
28
Truth, Goodness and Beauty1944
真善美
29
Phoenix at flight I1945
鳳凰于飛 之一
30
Phoenix at flight II1945
鳳凰于飛 之二
31
A Mother’s Heart1945
慈母心
32
A Happy Family1945
合家歡
33
Great Prospects Ahead1945
前程萬里
34
A Praise to Laughter1945
笑的讚美

Zhou Xuan Special I, 1934 - 1940

This is the first of a three part series specially dedicated to Zhou Xuan’s life and career. Songs that appear in this series are presented in rough chronological order. This installment covers her notable recordings from 1934 to 1940 and some of these early recordings may be of more historic value to our audience than listening pleasure.
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1
Red Roses
紅玫瑰
2
The Dove (La Paloma)1934
鴿子
3
Special ExpressFebruary 4, 1935
特別快車
4
Song of the Four SeasonsMarch 22, 1937
四季歌
5
When Wilt Thou Come Again? April 24, 1937
何日君再來
6
Brocade of Spring FlowersDecember 10, 1938
春花如錦
7
Song of Flowers1938
百花歌
8
Peddling Bric-a-bracOctober 25, 1938
賣雜貨
9
The Heaven Song1939
天堂歌
10
Seeing Thee Off1939
送君
11
Tears of a Singsong Girl1939
歌女淚
12
Flying Silver Flakes1939
銀花飛
13
Remembering My Beloved1940
憶良人
14
A Bleak Night1940
淒涼之夜
15
You Are the Winds and I’m the Waves1940
郎是風兒姐是浪
16
Blooming Lanterns1940
燈花開
17
Resentments in My Heart1940
心頭恨
18
Eternal Longing1940
長相思
19
The Ethereal Song1940
縹緲歌
20
Dong Xiao Wan1940
董小宛
21
My Wishes1940
心願
22
Grilling Maid RedNovember 18, 1940
烤紅
23
A Flower on My Lapel1940
襟上一朵花
24
A Street Moon1940
街頭月
25
Dream1940
26
Autumn’s Remembrance1940
秋的懷念
27
Kisses Everywhere1940
處處吻
28
Resentments at a Bordello1940
青樓恨
29
A Floral Girl1940
花花姑娘
30
Blooming Flowers Await My LoveFebruary 6, 1940
花開等郎來
31
Peddling Flatbread1940
賣燒餅

Duets

This installment formally introduces duets in Antique Pop. Most of these songs take on a style very similar to Chinese folk music, usually set in very simple melodies and presented as dialogues between a man and a woman. There are exceptions, with voices in polyphonic composition, and they evince great affinity to early Hollywood musicals.

The opening music for this installment is a section taken from 'New Year Celebration/賀新年', with Zhang Fan/張帆. It is interesting to note that the music transitions into the 'Jingle Bells' melody, probably because in the Chinese perception, Christmas was more or less the equivalent to their tradition new year, for otherwise, 'Auld Lang Syne' would have been a more appropriate choice.
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1
Malay SceneriesOctober 12, 1943
馬來風光
2
Caring InstructionsMay 8, 1939
叮嚀
3
Good TimesOct 7, 1946
好時光
4
Wang the FifthApril 29, 1937
王老五
5
A Heart Reflects A StarSeptember 19, 1946
星心相印
6
A Heart Reflects A StarSeptember 19, 1946
星心相印
7
For As Long As the Heaven and Earth Remain1941
天長地久
8
Mahjongg SutraLate 1930's
麻將經
9
Birds Visiting the PhoenixMarch 5, 1943
百鳥朝鳳
10
A Man's Passion a Woman's LoveApril 21, 1948
郎情妹意
11
Love Is Like TreasureMarch 4, 1940
愛如金玉
12
Lakeside Four Beats1948
湖畔四拍
13
Dialogues of the SeasonsFebruary 19, 1040
四季問答
14
Life Is Full of Fork RoadsJune 11, 1940
人生多岔路
15
The Pastoral SongJuly 10, 1939
牧歌
16
Dingger Ling Gu DangDecember 16, 1943
丁個兒鈴鼓鐺
17
Song of the LandMarch 10, 1943
大地之歌
18
Three Trees1947
三棵树
19
By Suzhou CreekDecember 4th, 1946
蘇州河邊
20
Congratulations1946
恭喜恭喜
21
Where Is Youth?July 29, 1943
何處是青春
22
Song of a Rickshaw ManFebruary 27, 1947
三輪車夫歌
23
Advancing AbreastJuly 15, 1942
並肩前進

The Lesser Know Singers

A collection of lesser known singers.
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1
A Bountiful Year1948
豐年
2
Marks of Love1947
戀痕
3
River West Nursery Rhyme1940
江西童謠
4
Little Mice1940
米老鼠
5
Verses of the Seasons1940
四季吟
6
Verses of Remembrance1940
思君吟
7
Miss Shanghai1947
上海小姐
8
The Dance Bible1938
跳舞经
9
Goddess in Holy Dress1939
雲裳仙子
10
Canary1936
黃鶯兒
11
The Prodigal Son1948
荒唐浪子
12
Fine Nights Cannot Be Retained
良夜不能留
13
Butterflies Dance and Swallows Fly
蝴蝶翩翩燕子飛
14
Regrets1947
悔恨
15
The World Is Full of Hope1947
人間盡是新希望
16
Memories of the Sea1948
海的懷念
17
Stars and the Moon1948
星和月
18
A Miss Becomes a Misses1948
小姐變太太
19
Funhouse Mirrors1947
哈哈鏡

Foreign Songs Adapted

Listening to foreign songs alongside with their Shanghai adaptations, one easily notices the progression of antique Shanghai pop's stylistic progression and marvels at, realizes its uniqueness.
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1
A Little Home1934
小小家庭
2
In der himmelblauen, kleinen Limousine1939
3
Build a Little Home1933
4
Roses Everywhere
薔薇處處開
5
Polly Wolly Doodle1935
6
Ha Cha Cha1935
哈雀雀
7
Ha Cha Cha1934
8
Perfect Harmony
鸞鳳和鳴
9
Rosemarie1936
10
A Busy Songstress
紅歌女忙
11
Rumba Tambah1933
12
Three Years1943
三年
13
One Day When We Were Young
14
Song of the Volga Boatmen1939
伏爾加船夫曲
15
Song of the Volga Boatmen
16
Dreams of Spring
春之夢
17
Chinese Nights
支那の夜
18
Su Zhou Nocturne
蘇州夜曲
19
Su Zhou Nocturne
蘇州夜曲
20
Anticipation
期待
21
Winter Jasmine
迎春花
22
Crossing the Bridge (London Bridge Is Falling Down)1947
過大橋

Zhang Fan and Chen Juan Juan

This installment brings two singers who were 'sisters' on the silver screen. They share much in common at the first glance yet each has her very distinct style.
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1
We Want Papa1943
我們要爸爸
2
I Still Have a Glimmer of Hope1948
我還有一線希望
3
Awaiting the Swallows1948
待燕曲
4
I Want to Dream of You1948
我要夢見你
5
Song of Songs
歌的歌
6
Listen to My Singing1947
聽我唱
7
Maiden's Sorrow
8
Misty Moon1948
朦朧月
9
Endless "My Love" to Be Sung1944
唱不完的郎
10
Peach Flowers in Bloom1948
桃花朵朵紅
11
The Boat of Happiness1948
幸福的船
12
Windows to the Heart1948
心靈的窗
13
Ode to Spring1948
春之頌
14
I Want to Go Home1948
我想回家
15
The Bedbug Song1948
臭蟲歌
16
Spring over Lord Su Causeway1948
蘇堤春曉
17
A Courtesan's Lament1941
嘆煙花
18
Little Orphan Girl1937
小孤女
19
Silently I Question Heaven1948
無語問蒼天
20
Roses1944
玫瑰花

Li Li Hua and Bai Yun

Two very delicate voices that sang with a traditional panache - evergreen movie queen, Li Li Hua and Bai Yun.
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1
Three Worlds1941
三個世界
2
Ravens all over the Sky1946
烏鴉滿地飛
3
A Little Ditty/Country Love Song1941
小山歌(農村情歌)
4
Riding to Pine River
騎馬到松江
5
Buffalo Back Love Song1948
牛背情歌
6
Whisperings at the Window1943
窗前密語
7
Blooming Peach Blossoms1942
桃花江
8
The Soft Spring Winds over Peach Blossom Levee1941
桃花堤上春風軟
9
A Flying Flock of Nightingales1943
群鶯飛
10
You Must Turn around and Think1943
你也要回頭想
11
Willow Branches Are Greens1946
柳絲青
12
Chivalrous Spirit, Tender Heart1941
柔情俠骨
13
The Flower Selling Girl1943
賣花女
14
The Flowers Selling Girls of Shanghai1939
上海の花売娘

The Soprano Edition

This installment presents the true divas, amazing sopranos of Shanghai.

Corrigendum: I mispronounced the name 喻宜萱 in this installment as Yu(2) Yi(4) Xian(2), whereas it should have been Yu(4) Yi(2) Xuan(1).
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1
Candy Peddling Song1943
賣糖歌
2
The Flowers of Spring1948
春天的花朵
3
I Shall Sing for You1948
我為你歌唱
4
Red Bean Song1948
紅豆詞
5
A Gardenful of Spring1937
滿園春色
6
Country Outing1932
郊游
7
Quitting Opium Song1943
戒煙歌
8
My Canary1943
私の鶯
9
Food Conservation Song1946
節食歌
10
Re-creation1948
創造
11
The Great Wall Ballad1947
長城謠
12
The Willow Branches Are Long1948
柳條長
13
The Falling Mahogany Leaves1947
東風落桃葉
14
A Spirit of Dreams1947
夢魂無所依
15
I Do Not Want a Lover1948
我不要情人
16
I Shall Let You Go1948
你去吧
17
Tear Marks1948
啼痕
18
Misty Night, Silent Thoughts1947
夜色濛濛意悄悄
19
The Anonymous1947
無名氏
20
A Simple Life1948
簡單的生活
21
Song of Natural Bonds1936
天倫歌
22
Misty Rain1948
雨濛濛
23
Ode to Plum Blossoms1948
梅花操

Liang Ping and Yi Min

This installment features two very modern singers in the 1940s, Liang Ping and Yin Min. The production and commercial quality of their songs reached parity with the leading trends of the world. Liang Ping's voice was highly protean and she treated her songs with a classical interpretation, a facile jazz delivery and occasionally a traditional ballad style of singing.
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1
The Youthful I (Coloratura Version)1947
2
Both Are Destitute Wanderers1948
3
This Wondrous Love
4
My Tormentor1944
5
Zhao Jun's Lament (Art Song Version)1946
6
Our Ageless Papa
7
Look at Me1948
8
Dream of Romance
9
Have Another Drink
10
Weng Weng Weng
11
Multiflora Roses and Roses1948
12
Fine Night by the Lake1948
13
Zhao Jun's Lament (Traditional Version)
14
The Youthful I

The Gentlemen Singers of Shanghai

This installment brings you some of the notable gentlemen singers of Shanghai. They were truly a rare breed but one finds their styles no less diverse or engaging.
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1
The Bucolic Song1948
2
Women Should Wed1948
3
A Little Thing1940
4
Lovely Flowers
5
How Can I Keep From Thinking of Her?1940
6
In Spring1936
7
Loving Autumn Fragrance1940
8
A Busy Youth1941
9
Youth Dance1947
10
Passionate Eyes1948
11
Ever Since Meeting You1942

Nightingale and Dews

This installment features two singers whose careers took off in the post WWII Shanghai, the golden era of pop music. They are Wu Ying Yin and Zhang Lu. The bands had perfected their crafts and the music industry had reached its full maturity. The results were very elaborated arrangements and highly refined vocal styles, and even the voices that sang blues were very refined, if not overly refined.
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1
I Want to Forget You1946
2
Fine Spring Nights1947
3
Strarry Sky1948
4
The Songs That You Hear
5
Be Careful When Falling in Love1948
6
Nights of Neon Lights and Fancy Wine1947
7
My Handsome Tormentor1947
8
I Want Your Love1948
9
Roses, I Am Charmed by You1947
10
Listen to My Amorous Deliverance1948
11
Spring Outing Song1948
12
The Faded Dreams1948
13
Min River Serenade1948

White Rainbow and Autumn Clouds

This installment features Bai Hong and Gong Qiu Xia, who joined the entertainment field and achieved fame even before the Golden Voice, Zhou Xuan. What is also afforded here is a rare opportunity to experience the harbingers of antique Shanghai pop music, Li Li Li and Wang Ren Mei, who were indeed the very first of the breed. Though their presence was brief and their vocal styles bespoke a highly experimental phase of the genre, their legacy is not something to be overlooked.

Erratum: "Drizzly Rain" was recorded in late 1938, as listed below, not in 1939 as announced.
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1
Farewell, Sha Sha!November 18, 1944
莎莎再會吧
2
Rose, Rose Everywhere1942
3
Drizzly Rain1932
4
Pining for My Love’s ReturnNovember 21, 1938
5
Don’t Walk Away So FastApril 16, 1948
6
MimiDecember 12, 1946
7
The Boating SongNovember 30, 1942
8
Without the Rain, the Flowers Won't BloomJune 16, 1948
9
Under the Lilac TreesDecember 23, 1940
10
The Person of My Dreams1942
11
He Is a Spring BreezeJune 18, 1941
12
The Mad BandNovember 4, 1946

White Light and Fragrant Violets

You can hear Li Xiang Lan’s (Yamaguchi Yoshiko’s) operatic pop songs and the fascinating stories of her life. Equally stunning is Bai Guang’s incomparable charisma. This installment features the most unique voices of Chinese oldies.
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1
Flowers Bloom for My Love1942
花香為情郎
2
Shame of Not Meeting before My Marriage1942
恨不相逢未嫁時
3
Hypocrite1948
假正經
4
The Fire of Passion1945
戀之火
5
The Dreamboats over Lake Tai1939
夢の太湖船
6
Candy Peddling Song (Coloratura)
賣糖歌
7
Reminiscence1948
懷念
8
The Second Dream1944
第二夢
9
Those Little Flowers1948
小花
10
The Seagull1944
海燕
11
Autumn Nights1944
秋夜

Gold and Silver

The featured stars of this bimetallic installment are Zhou Xuan and Yao Li. Your host, Ling also takes special care to reveal some facets that distinguish antique Chinese pop music from its western kin.
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1
Fine Flowers and a Perfect MoonNovember 18, 1940
花好月圓
2
Peddling LovesicknessJuly 4, 1939
賣相思
3
The Traveling Singsong GirlMarch 3, 1937
4
Rose, Rose I Love YouDecember 22, 1940
5
Rose, Rose I Love You
6
Susan at Tea Picking
7
Picking Areca NutsDecember 31, 1940
8
Mountains ApartMarch 21, 1947
9
True or UntrueFebruary 12, 1947
10
Ode to SpringJune 22, 1943
11
Love InquiriesJanuary 15, 1940
12
Pheonixes in FlightApril 11, 1945
13
Canaries Are FlyingJune 17, 1948

Glamour from an Erstwhile Era

In this pilot installment, you can hear songs by some of the biggest stars that shone in the night sky of Shanghai in the 30’s and 40’s. Most of the recordings featured here were made at the height of Chinese Antique Pop. They are representative of the sophisticated taste of mid to late 40’s and demonstrate a unique flavor particular to the period - rich, ornate, delicate but devoid of bashfulness. To mention a few resounding names: Zhou Xuan, Li Xiang Lan, Yao Li, Bai Guang, Bai Hong, Wu Ying Yin, and Ou Yang Fei Ying.
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1
Shanghai at NightApril 11, 1945
夜上海
2
The Love That Cannot Be HadMarch 18, 1948
得不到的愛情
3
Let the Bright Moon Convey My Longing to the Far-and-awayAugust 5, 1948
明月千里寄相思
4
You Are So BeautifulMay 20, 1948
你真美麗
5
I'm Waiting for Your ReturnFebruary 21, 1948
等著你回來
6
TuberosesJune 16, 1944
夜來香
7
The Intoxicating Lip Rouge
醉人的口紅
8
Anticipating the Dusk in the Misty, Drizzly Rain
細雨迷濛昐黃昏
9
Flying all over the Dance FloorDecember 16, 1938
滿場飛
10
Who Made a Knot in My Heart?October 25, 1943
誰在我的心頭打個結
11
The Young Lady on the RickshawMay 28, 1947
三輪車上的小姐
12
The Spring Is Here but You Are Not HereJanuary 27, 1948
春來人不來
13
Shangri-LaMay 28, 1947
香格里拉